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Between and Mortarboard

UMMA Object Specific Fields

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Rooster on a Branch

Accession Number

Rooster on a Branch

Itô Jakuchû

Object Creation Date
18th century

Medium & Support
hanging scroll, ink on paper

72 1/2 in x 24 3/4 in (184.15 cm x 62.87 cm)

Credit Line
Museum purchase made possible by the Margaret Watson Parker Art Collection Fund

Subject matter
Itō Jakuchū is widely known for his depictions of plants and animals in association with Zen Buddhism. The son of a successful merchant family who sold groceries, Jakuchū left the family business to study Zen Buddhism. His numerous depictions of plants and animals are believed to represent the inherent Buddha nature of all living things. The rooster was specifically linked to Zen thought, as the sharp cry of the rooster was likened to the moment of enlightenment. 

Physical Description
This hanging scroll depicts a chicken executed in rapid brushstrokes, using various shades of black ink. The face of the bird is naturalistically depicted, while its tail feathers are somewhat abstracted. 

Primary Object Classification

Primary Object Type
hanging scroll

Collection Area

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hanging scroll

4 Related Resources

Ink and Realisms
(Part of: Artist Associations and Art Movements)
Japan Pax Tokugawa 1600-1868
(Part of: Empires and Colonialism)

& Author Notes

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